CSX continues to make good progress in constructing the second new Virginia Avenue tunnel, and soon it will be time to begin removing the temporary cross-street bridge decks over the excavation site to allow completion of the tunnel and final restoration of Virginia Avenue. The process will involve diverting traffic away or limiting traffic on the cross-street bridge decks; completing tunnel construction and backfilling the excavation under the cross streets; installing permanent storm drains and other utilities; and constructing and paving the new roadway.
The final streetscape will be constructed in accordance with the plans that were developed through a collaborative process with input from ANC6B and ANC6D representatives, other public groups and DDOT, and approved by the DC Public Space Committee. Features of the streetscape plan include extensive landscaping and tree planting; additional Washington globe-style street lights; new brick sidewalks; a new, separate bike path; brick gutters and granite curbing; and other elements that were selected with public input during the approval process. The restoration plans are available for review on the project website and at the project’s monthly public meetings.
While the entire schedule is being finalized, work could begin on 3rd Street as soon as the first week in October. Traffic on 3rd Street will be restricted to one-way, northbound-only travel between I Street and the I-695 onramp/Virginia Avenue on the north side of the freeway. Southbound traffic approaching from the Capitol Hill area will be detoured east on G Street and south on 4th Street, unless entering the westbound I-695 on-ramp. (Trucks over 12 feet tall will be detoured to New Jersey Avenue.) Pedestrian access will be maintained across the intersection throughout this process. The 3rd Street driveway to the Capitol Quarter townhomes will remain open during this process, as will access to the parking deck and loading dock for 200 I Street SE.
Due to the extensive utility work and permanent nature of the street restoration, CSX expects one-way traffic restrictions to be in place on 3rd Street for three to four months, barring unforeseeable weather impacts or other contingencies.
A detailed detour map and additional schedule information will be distributed when it is available.
CSX understands that this work will inconvenience some residents in neighborhood around the Virginia Avenue tunnel and other drivers, and we apologize for those disruptions. We remain committed to completing this project as quickly as safety will allow, and we remain on schedule for being finished within the 42-month window we announced at the beginning of the project. We greatly appreciate your patience in the meantime.